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10 Ways to Make the Most of Summer Berries

By Tami Weiser
July 5, 2024
Courtesy of Joyful Healthy Eats

One of the biggest joys of the season is having fresh summer berries in everything. On our yogurt in the morning, in salads, blended into sauces and smoothies — and, of course, grabbed by the handful out of the fridge. Bursting with sweetness and full of  antioxidants, they’re a treat to enjoy all summer long. No matter what kind is your favorite (you don’t have to choose just one!), you can use it in any of these sweet and savory recipes.

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1. Slow Cooker Berry Breakfast Quinoa

Slow cooker berry breakfast quinoa

Courtesy of Eat Yourself Skinny

Berries at breakfast usually show up in smoothies, yogurt parfaits, or chia pudding, but sometimes you want something warm and comforting in the morning. With just 5 minutes of prep, you can set up this protein- and fiber-rich quinoa porridge in the slow cooker, so all you have to do in the morning is spoon it into a bowl. Top it with chopped nuts or granola for crunch, if you like.

Try this recipe from Eat Yourself Skinny.

2. Maple Blueberry Turkey Sausage Breakfast Patties

Maple blueberry turkey sausage patties

Courtesy of Ambitious Kitchen

Homemade turkey sausage, with blueberries? It sounds fancy, and your brunch guests will be impressed, but it’s actually so simple to throw together with just 10 minutes of prep. The spice mix balances the sweet blueberries and touch of maple in the recipe. Make them ahead and keep them in the fridge for quick breakfasts.

Try this recipe from Ambitious Kitchen.

3. Black Rice and Raspberry Salad

Black rice and raspberry salad

Courtesy of Green Evi

This dramatic-looking salad is a flavorful as it is pretty, with raspberries, crunchy toasted pine nuts, a touch of fresh mint, and a tangy lime vinaigrette with mustard. Bring it to a potluck, or enjoy it for lunch or dinner with your protein of choice. Bonus: Black rice not only boasts a satisfyingly chewy texture and nutty flavor, it’s also loaded with antioxidants.

Try this recipe from Green Evi.

4. Blackberry Kiwi Balsamic Chicken Salad

Blackberry kiwi balsamic chicken salad

Courtesy of Joyful Healthy Eats

A salad with grilled chicken can be ho-hum, or you can fill it with exciting ingredients like summer berries and make it a fantastic meal. That’s what this version is, with blackberries, spinach, kiwi, red onion, crunchy walnuts, and feta, plus spice-rubbed chicken and a tasty balsamic dressing. It’s a lunch or dinner you’ll look forward to. Swap in sliced strawberries for the blackberries, if you prefer.

Try this recipe from Joyful Healthy Eats.

5. Healthy Berry Crisp

Healthy berry crisp

Courtesy of Boo Boo’s Bakery

Don’t tell anyone this indulgent-tasting berry crisp is healthy — they’d never guess. It’s gluten free, dairy free, and has no refined sugar, but it’s just as sweet and luscious as you want. Serve it with plain yogurt, or ice cream or whipped cream (non-dairy, if you like). You could even have leftovers for breakfast.

Try this recipe from Boo Boo’s Bakery.

6. Mixed Summer Berries Salad

Mixed berry salad

Courtesy of Healthy Fitness Meals

It’s so helpful to have a go-to fruit salad recipe to enjoy all summer, whether you’re going to the beach, to a picnic, to a friend’s place for dinner or brunch, or just looking for something sweet and healthy to enjoy after dinner. Consider this your new fave. With a mix of berries you can change up to suit your taste, plus a quick lime-honey dressing and some crunchy poppy seeds, it’s simple, versatile, and delicious.

Try this recipe from Healthy Fitness Meals.

7. Blackberry Goat Cheese Crostini

Blackberry goat cheese crostini

Courtesy of Life As A Strawberry

Here’s a quick and easy summer appetizer that’s also sophisticated and pretty. Top toasted baguette slices with a mixture of whipped goat cheese and cream cheese, top with blackberries, a little fresh basil, and some lime zest, drizzle with honey, and serve. We like to use sourdough baguette, and sprinkle with flaky sea salt and a bit of freshly ground black pepper.

Try this recipe from Life As A Strawberry.

8. Summer Berry Smash Mocktail

Smashed berry cocktail

Courtesy of Munching with Mariyah

An acai-blueberry combo, along with lime, mint, and a touch of honey, gives this mocktail tons of flavor, and lots of antioxidants, too. As refreshing as it tastes, it’s also beautiful, too, and a great option when you don’t feel like drinking.

Try this recipe from Munching with Mariyah.

9. Strawberry Cheesecake Cottage Cheese Ice Cream

Strawberry cottage cheese ice cream

Courtesy of All the Healthy Things

Is there anything high-protein cottage cheese can’t do? Here you transform it into a luscious berry-infused dessert by blending it with strawberry jam, vanilla, and a little maple syrup, topping it with chopped strawberries and crushed graham crackers, and freezing. You can also run it through an ice cream maker, if you like, and blend the berries right in at the end.

Try this recipe from All the Healthy Things.

10. Healthy Raspberry Oat Bars

Raspberry oat bars

Courtesy of Erin Lives Whole

The crust and topping on this wholesome bars is made from the same dough, so it takes just 15 minutes to prep to get them in the oven. With just fresh raspberries and a touch of maple syrup in the filling, the fruit flavor really shines. Drizzle with melted dark chocolate to take these bars to the next level.

Try this recipe from Erin Lives Whole.

Read next: 14 Healthy Peach Recipes Perfect for Summer

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